I am a brick producer, just like my father and grandparents, and I own the São Francisco brickyard located in the city of Carnaúba dos Dantas, in the northeast region of Brazil. Back in 2010, my company had five very inefficient open type ovens, each with a capacity of 35,000 bricks per batch, with an average monthly production of 700,000 bricks. Drying was carried out in the company's backyard; the loss rate was close to 25% and the products were transported by the operators on forklifts. It had 33 employees and sold 1,000 of the second quality tiles at R$150.00 and the first quality tiles at R$190.00.
The EELA programme implemented by Swisscontact provided technical assistance for the improvement and modernisation of my company between 2013 and 2016. As a consequence, I replaced two open kilns with a 14-chamber closed Cedan kiln with a capacity of 30,000 tiles/chamber and implemented a drying system in the brick loading space. We also installed a translucent plastic cover to protect the tiles from rain, and wooden shelves with wheels for drying and moving the tiles, which were later replaced by metal shelves. With the new kiln, we started manufacturing new two products: square tile and loop type. The current production is 1,200 thousand/month and we sell 1,000 of second quality tiles at R$170,00, the first quality tiles at R$220,00, the square tiles at R$370,00 and the loop type tile at R$470,00. Part of the investment was financed by Banco do Nordeste.
I seek to improve my economic situation, by producing higher and better quality products. Additionally, I want to comply with local environmental regulations, to provide a better future for my family. In the future I hope to have my whole production process much more mechanised, allowing us to expand our sales capacity.
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